Module Information

Module Identifier
IP35520
Module Title
The Cuban Missile Crisis
Academic Year
2017/2018
Co-ordinator
Semester
Semester 2
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Lecture 11 x 1 Hour Lectures
Seminar 6 x 2 Hour Seminars
 

Assessment

Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%
Semester Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  F resit: The student will re-sit the module by examination only for a capped pass mark (40). H resit: The student will submit missing coursework elements and/or re-sit by examination in the upplementary exam period in lieu of a missed/failed exam for full marks. Students re-sitting elements of failed coursework are required to select a different essay/assignment title and must not submit re-written versions of the original essay/assignment.   50%
Supplementary Assessment 1 x 2,500 word essay  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

1. Outline debates about the origins, dynamics and conclusion of the crisis.
2. Compare and contrast different accounts of how close the world came to nuclear war in 1962.
3. Demonstrate a systematic and detailed understanding of the implications of recent scholarship on this topic for the interpretations of historians, political scientists and students of crisis management.
4. Critically evaluate the possible lessons of the crisis for the conduct of international affairs.

Brief description

In October 1962 Cold War came close to nuclear war. Ever since scholars, political leaders and military officials have pondered how close we were to Armageddon. The aim of the module is to explore the debates surrounding the Cuban Missile Crisis, and examine how historians, political scientists and students of crisis management analyse the events of 1962. A second aim is to show how the study of the crisis illuminates various aspects of scholarship. What, for example, can recent historiography tell us about the opportunities and challenges for historical method, especially now that the Cold War is over? Third, the possible lessons of the crisis for diplomacy and crisis management are studied not just in the Cold War context, but in the age of weapons of mass destruction which we still inhabit.

Content

The module will be delivered through a combination of lectures and seminars. Themes and topics covered during these sessions include:

- Origins of the Crisis
- Dynamics of the Crisis
- Resolution of the Crisis
- Historiography and Revisionism
- The role of nuclear weapons
- Soviet and Cuban perspectives
- The roles of Kennedy and Khrushchev
- Britain and the Missile Crisis
- Lessons of the Crisis

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number na
Communication Students will learn how to present their ideas verbally and in writing, and how to present their arguments most effectively. They will develop skills in using the many sources of information available to best advantage. They will learn to be clear in their writing and speaking and to be direct about aims and objectives. They will learn to consider only that which is relevant to the topic, focus and objectives of their argument or discussion. Students will also be required to submit their written assessments in word-processed format and the presentation of work should reflect effective expression of ideas and good use of language skills in order to ensure clarity, coherence and effective communication.
Improving own Learning and Performance The module aims to promote self-management but within a context in which support and assistance is available from the module convenor and other students. Students will be expected to improve their own learning and performance by undertaking their own research and exercising their own initiative, including searching for sources and deciding how to answer assessed essay questions.
Information Technology The module is designed to hone and test skills of use to students in their working lives, particularly in speaking to small groups, listening, thinking and responding to the statement of others. Moreover, the written work requires students to write clearly and concisely, which is a common task in the workplace. Students will be encouraged throughout to reflect on their performance and to consider lessons for future application.
Personal Development and Career planning The module is designed to hone and test skills of use to students in their working lives, particularly in speaking to small groups, listening, thinking and responding to the statement of others. Moreover, the written work requires students to write clearly and concisely, which is a common task in the workplace. Students will be encouraged throughout to reflect on their performance and to consider lessons for future application.
Problem solving The preparation of the assessed essays will be developed and assessed by asking students to: adopt differing points of view; organize data and formulate an answer to the problem; reason logically; construct theoretical arguments; and divide issues into smaller problems.
Research skills Students will be required to undertake independent research in order to complete the assessed work. This will involve utilizing a range of information sources, including core academic texts, journal articles, EU electronic publications, and online news sources.
Subject Specific Skills Students have the opportunity to develop, practice and test a wide range of subject specific skills that help them to understand, conceptualise and evaluate examples and ideas on the module. These subject specific skills include: • Collect and understand a wide range of data relating to the module • Evaluate competing perspectives • Apply a range of methodologies to complex historical and contemporary social and political problems.
Team work Students will undertake team exercises in the seminars. For certain topics of this module, seminars will consist of small-group discussions where students will be asked to discuss as a group the core issues related to the seminar topic. These class discussions and debates form a significant part of the module, and will allow students to approach and examine a given topic through team work.

Notes

This module is at CQFW Level 6